Dark leafy greens are the best nature has to offer. According to this source:
“…green leafy vegetables are among the most nutrient dense foods available — high in calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous, zinc and vitamins A, C, E and K. Each one is packed with fiber, folic acid, chlorophyll and many other phytochemicals and micronutrients.”
Eating them raw provides the extra enzymes for nutrient absorption and improved digestion. (For a great way to slip them in with other veggies, take a look at this recipe for Colorful Springtime Slaw.)
We grow Kale, Collards, Beets, Broccoli and salad greens everywhere we can at our house. I never want to run short of these amazing, and easy to grow, power-packed foods. With all of these leafy greens around, we don’t need the expensive green superfood powders, or daily green capsules for our family of 6. We spend a few bucks on some packs of organic seed and grow a whole season’s worth in our yard. This is one thing I LOVE about growing my own food; the empowerment to eat amazing things, even while living on a tight budget.
Our Pasta with Power Greens dish is topped with a generous amount of greens and adds bacon to the mix. Can’t really go wrong there.
It can be made with either a homemade pasta (I shared a tutorial on how to make the homemade pasta on my blog), but is just as delicious with dried pasta… well, maybe not quite as delicious… but still great.
Complete the dish with parmesan cheese or fresh cracked pepper. YUM!
Pasta with power greens & bacon
- 2 bunches (or large handfuls) dark leafy greens such as: kale collards, beet greens, broccoli greens – or a mixture
- 3-4 good sized garlic cloves chopped
- 1 whole onion chopped
- 1 lb. bacon preferably nitrate-free from humanely raised pork
- Parmesan cheese Freshly grated (optional)
- salt & pepper
- pasta fresh or dried
- Chop bacon into 1 inch chunks. (Mine is usually frozen, and it’s easier to chop when it’s not fully defrosted. It doesn’t slip all over the place.)
- In a large skillet, cook bacon to desired crispiness. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Drain out some of the bacon fat from the pan, but not all! (I save mine for later use – it’s very healthy if it comes from free range pork).
- Meanwhile, put a large pot of salted water on to boil.
- Throw the chopped onions & garlic into the pan with the lovely bacon fat and let cook a few minutes until soft.
- Add greens into the skillet and salt generously.
- Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes or so… covering with a lid to steam a bit.
- Taste for seasoning and doneness.
- If pasta is not yet ready, transfer greens to a platter to keep from over-cooking.
- Cook pasta to al dente. Before tossing out pasta water, save a little and set aside.
- Add pasta to skillet (if large enough) or to a large bowl to toss greens in with the pasta.
- Add a drizzle of the pasta water if it looks a bit dry (the bacon fat should give it a nice glossy shimmer).
- Sprinkle with bacon pieces and a shred of parmesan and serve.